Earlier this month, the House of Representatives proposed a successor to the FAST Act of 2015. While the Invest in America Act is a highway bill that is focused on infrastructure, there are a number of provisions that could directly impact the trucking industry.
Safety Fitness Determination
Back in 2017, the FMCSA threw out a rule for out-of-service orders and compliance interventions. The Invest in America Act would revive the rule of how carriers are rated for compliance. The provisions would require new scoring methods and for carrier ratings to be made public. If the bill is passed, the reform is slated to occur before the end of 2021.
Parking and the Invest in America Act
Parking has become a hot button issue as of late, and the new bill aims to help rectify problems with parking. The bill contains a provision for $250 million dollars to be allocated to building new parking areas for truckers. More rest areas, weigh stations, and larger lots would be built and expanded along major highways in conjunction with new tech to help truckers find parking more easily.
The Invest in America Act would limit how long truckers can be detained at shipping and receiving points without pay. While the burden of pay would fall on the carriers, the bill would also give trucking companies more leverage with shippers to get them to cut the amount of time they hold up their drivers.
Leasing and Training
If the Invest in America Act is passed, the FMCSA would be required to create a task force to study predatory leasing agreements between carriers and independent contractors. Additionally, there would be a provision to generate quarterly reports on the rule for entry-level drivers, which was delayed earlier this year until 2022.
Hours of Service
One big item that stood out in the Invest in America Act was the provision that would delay the recently finalized hours-of-service ruling. This would stall the ability for drivers to split their time and avoid mandatory breaks.
Express Freight Finance will continue to follow this legislation when it is voted upon this September.